Today, most people know that physical activity is a must for everybody with it’s many health benefits. It’s important to find a way to incorporate it into our day-to-day lives. Within 4 to 6 weeks of being consistent with the chosen activity, the habit is created and that’s when the fun begins. You start feeling more energized and in a better mood and you start to see physical changes too. It is also fun to choose a goal and work toward achieving it. It helps keep the motivation high and makes it more challenging. There is a strategy behind setting goald though. The key is to make it SMART.
Specific, Measurable, Action, Realistic, Time
Saying : I want to lose weight, won’t take you anywhere…or I want to lose 10 pounds… A good goal would be : I want to lose 5 pounds in 5 weeks by walking 30 minutes everyday and strength train 3 days a week. It’s specific (5 lbs), measurable (with a balance), action is the walking and strength train part, realistic (1lb per week) and time (5 weeks).
If you’re a soccer player you could want to increase your sprint speed from 10 mph to 12 mph. You would achieve that by incorporating plyometrics into your workout and Tabata sprints. You could want to increase your muscle mass by changing your reps to 6 to 10 with heavier loads. Or you could want to drink more water everyday and you would count the number of glasses until you reach 1 to 1,5 L a day.
The key is to write it down and make a plan. You need to evaluate your present condition, choose a goal and understand why you choose this one, follow the plan, measure your progress, reach your goal and choose a new one!
The help of a certified personal trainer or a nutritionist or any professional can be something to consider. He can make sure your goal is realistic and can give you tips to make sure you achieve your goal. Also, the more advanced you are in your sport or the longer you have been working out, the more specific and detailed your plan needs to be. The concept of periodization is very important to keep injuries away in those cases. It would look a bit like this:
You have your micro cycles (short term goals like technique and strength) that helps you achieve your macro cycle (long term goal). Your long term goal can be a year or even 3 years, your medium goal is uually about 6 months and your short term goals can change every month.
What are your 2012 goals?